Nearly 3,000 of these cars, which could be described as a forerunner of ŠKODA’s current crop of SUVs, came off the production line in the kiwi town of Otahuhu. Only a handful of specimens have made their way to Europe in recent years. One of them is joining the ŠKODA Museum, while another – in full working order – is in the hands of an owner from South Moravia.

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The TREKKA, the first ever car to be designed and made in New Zealand, was a joint effort by ŠKODA, ŠKODA’s New Zealand importer, and local companies with the right expertise. Complete technical kits of ŠKODA OCTAVIA components (comprising an engine, gearbox and axles) were dispatched from ŠKODA headquarters in Mladá Boleslav, along with adapted chassis differing primarily in their wheelbase, which had been shortened from 2,389 mm to 2,165 mm. The body, a team effort by the British designer George Taylor and Josef Velebný, who had previously served as ŠKODA’s head of bodywork development, was then built on top.

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The TREKKA’s standout features included its independent suspension and backbone chassis. The front, longitudinally mounted OHV four-cylinder engine with 1,221 cc displacement delivered power of 34 kW (47 PS) at 4,500 rpm. Combining this with a synchronised four-speed gearbox gave the car a top speed of 110 km/h.

Customers could choose from several different design versions: a three-door pick-up with between two and eight seats, a canvas soft-top or a fixed plastic hardtop, an estate model (STW), or a beach variant.

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